Sunday, July 20, 2008

Grief.

I think I can finally write about this. Maybe.

Thursday, June 12th, my Uncle (and Godfather) passed away. Thursday, June 12th was his 53rd birthday.

I found out in person, from my parents. They had flown in on Wednesday to visit me for a few days. After the news on Thursday morning, I packed a bag and we drove up to Chicago. 6 and a half hours later we pulled into my Grandma's driveway. The only thing we needed at that time was to be with each other.

My Uncle lived with my Grandma and his two young children. It was strange seeing his evening sitting place empty. It was strange seeing other people do what he would normally do. It was strange seeing my two cousins in such pain.

He was killed by a car while riding his bicycle to work. There were no witnesses, only the driver. They claimed that he was slipping in the gravel along the side of the road and swerved into the street. We have a hard time believing that. He was a safe rider. He would have let himself fall into the grass before swerving into oncoming traffic. He was 20 yards from the bicycle path. Only 20 yards.

We still don't know if the person driving is to blame, or if they will be charged in any way. The police are still investigating. They were driving with a suspended license at the time, which of course made the whole situation so much worse to us.

He touched so many people in life time. He was such a kind, thoughtful person. More than 200 people came to his services. More than 200.

It's been more than a month, and I still can't stop thinking about it, can't stop obsessing about the mysterious details. I still read the articles almost every day. I couldn't bring myself to write anything about it until now, and it's still hard. It's like putting it on paper (or screen) in my own words makes it real, and I don't want it to be real.

We have a petition circulating. We are trying to get the city to put in safer routes for bicyclists. Whether it be more sidewalks or smoother shoulders, anything to prevent another tragedy.

I want to help. I don't want other families to suffer the way we are.

If you would like to sign the petition, you can e-mail me at {cjd5xc at mizzou dot edu} with your name and address and I will add it for you. If you would like to help further, ask me in an e-mail what you can do and please pass this post along to others.


cjd

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